March 19, 2013
There is a reason many household cleaners have a “lemon scent”. It’s because lemons are pleasant and smell clean. But, other than smelling great, lemon juice is one of the best natural cleaners. Lemons are high in citric acid, have amazing antibacterial properties, and most likely won’t damage the fabric or wood you are cleaning.
Even more beneficial, lemon juice is safe to use where people, babies and pets may come into contact. Lemons can be kept in the fridge for up to three weeks but for best results,they should be at room temperature at the time of use. Roll the lemon across a surface to help you get the most juice out as possible and you’re ready to start cleaning.
Here are 18 ways to clean with lemons:
1. Soak your non delicate clothing (no silks) in a hot water and lemon juice combo (about a half cup per gallon of water) to brighten clothing. Or, add ½ cup to your machine’s rinse cycle. Wash as normal and if you can line dry in the sun after – even better.
2. Add a teaspoon of lemon juice to your wash to help your clothes smell fresher.
3. Add one cup of lemon juice to your load of wash along with your usual detergent as a bleach alternative.
4. Remove grease stains from clothing. Rub lemon juice into a grease stain on clothing and let sit overnight. Wash as normal.
5. Make a paste with lemon juice and cream of tarter to remove rust stains from cotton and polyesters. Test first then rub into the stain and let it sit for about a half hour. Wash as normal.
6. Remove juice stains by mixing 1/3 cup of lemon juice with 2/3 cup water and soak the stain. Wash as normal.
7. Rub half a lemon over the surface of a wooden or plastic chopping board to remove strong odors and stains. Let it sit for as long as overnight then rinse and air dry.
8. Place a cup 3/4 full of water with a couple tablespoons of lemon juice in the microwave and heat to boiling. Keep door closed for another10 minutes then just wipe the inside with a clean cloth. Food particles will easily wipe off and lingering odors will be gone.
9. You can also rub half a lemon with a bit of salt over the surface of copper pans and dishes to make them sparkle. The same is true for grills and grates. Rinse with water afterwards.
10. Use lemon juice to remove grease, soap deposits & lime scale from faucet & drain.
11. Use lemon juice to wipe down hard water stains on your bathroom tiles and glass shower. Mix 1 part lemon juice to 5 parts hot water.
12. Lemon juice and old toothbrush is an excellent cleaner to scrub tile grout.
13. Mix lemon juice with borax powder to clean your toilet.
14. Combine lemon juice with olive oil to polish wood furniture. Mix 1 part lemon to 2 parts olive oil.
15. Use lemon juice mixed with water in a spray bottle to wipe down windows and mirrors.
16. The same mixture can also be used to clean laminate counter tops. Rinse with water and dry.
17. Boil lemon slices in coffee pots and tea kettles to remove mineral. Allow the mixture to sit for an hour or two, and then rinse and dry.
18. Place earrings in a bowl of lemon juice to sanitize.
When cleaning with lemons always rinse with warm soapy water and dry with a clean cloth afterwards. One of the very few things you can’t clean with lemon juice is anything that is brass plated as the juice will damage the item.
Have you tried any of the above cleaning techniques using lemons? Are there other natural cleaners you’ve had success with? Please share them with us!
February 21, 2013
Does this sound familiar? You’ve spent a good amount of time pressing and starching your dress shirt but you can’t get the giant wrinkle – or crinkle – on the collar to smooth out.
What could be the problem?
When ironing the collar, you probably unfold and lay the collar out flat then iron across from one side to the other, right? Well, many collars have an inner-facing material within the collar called interfacing which gives the collar body, shape and stability. Ironing from side to side like that pushes the extra collar material and when the iron reaches the other end of the collar so does the extra fabric causing the wrinkle.
Here’s the solution:
Since pushing the excess collar fabric to the end of the collar is the true cause of this problem when ironing the collar, the solution is really quite simple…do not push the excess fabric to the end of the collar.
To finish collars correctly:
1. Place the iron at one end of the collar Iron across the collar in a normal fashion but stop in the center of the collar. This pushes the extra fabric to the middle of the collar.
2. Place the iron at the other end of the collar and iron across to the center, again pushing any excess fabric to the center.
3. All the excess fabric is now in the center of the collar. When the collar is folded down and placed on the hanger or worn, the extra material is hidden in the back and absorbed in the natural fold of the collar.
Viola! Now you know how to iron your shirt collars like a dry cleaner. Of course, if you don’t have hours and hours to do loads of laundry and iron to perfection, we’re happy to do it for you. Check out this video to see how we give your shirts the spa treatment.
January 31, 2013
Super Bowl parties are as American as the game of football itself. We’ve hosted a few around here and although they are loads of fun (whether you actually watch the game or not) they come with the potential for massive messes and tough after party stains.
Let’s get out the playbook and plan our defense against the most common Super Bowl Party Food Stains:
- It isn’t a party without the wings and barbecue. Buffalo, hot, barbecue & sweet sauce are, in our opinion, the messiest and most common. The evidence of these foods can be found days later on floors and clothing. If you are serving these foods at your party, try to keep them contained in the kitchen but if there is a spill on the carpet or sofa, blot (never rub or wipe) up the excess. These stains (as well as Pizza stains) have grease and oil in them so it’s best to use a dish detergent when cleaning up greasy spills. Mix a dish detergent with cold water and continue to blot until you lift the stain. Rinse by blotting with cold water and then use a towel to soak up the moisture left behind. Use the same dish detergent method on clothing prior to laundering with the rest of your clothing items.
- With all the hooting and hollering; jumping and high fives, you’re likely to have some beverage spills. You could cover all your counters with plastic table clothes or shelf liners. Easy clean up when you just fold it all up, spills and all, and toss. And, of course, encourage your guests to use coasters. (Not enough? Make your own using tiles. You can glue the team logos on for a festive touch. Thank you Pinterest)! If you do get a beverage spill on the carpet or sofa, blot immediately and brush up on Good Housekeeping’s stain buster tips for beverages.
- Who’s up for some yummy Chips & Salsa with Guacamole? And heck, we might as well throw on some Nacho Cheese! There’s a definite recipe for some spills - most likely on your shirt as you lob it all into your mouth with eyes on the game. Here’s great advice from Stainmaster on removing Salsa from the carpet. The same method could be used for cheese spills also. Guacamole is oily and is a combination of many ingredients. Scrape up excess with a dull knife then flush with cool water and blot. Follow the steps noted for sauces and you might want to let the dish detergent & water mixture sit on the stain for about 10 minutes before flushing with cool fresh water. Repeat until the stain has lifted.
- If you’re serving tasty gooey deserts with chocolate and icing and you have a spill, gently scrape off the excess then spray area with a diluted dish-washing-soap solution. Then, you guessed it, let it sit for about 5 minutes and blot with cool fresh water. If you spill on your clothing, treat the stain with water and a laundry detergent solution after scooping up the excess and rinse with water. If the stain is still visible, use an oxygen-based bleach with warm water and let it sit over night. Launder and check before drying that the stain has been removed so as not to set it for good.
Do you have any spill prevention or removal tips? Let us know in the comments below.
December 4, 2012
You can consult “Google”, YouTube, blogs, and Pinterest for stain removal tips but we’re going to tell you the best stain removal tip you need to know: Identify the TYPE of stain.
Before you can treat the stain, you need to identify which of the four types of clothing stains (oil, protein, tannin or dye) you have on your hands. If your stain is a combination stain (gum, crayon, lipstick, chocolate) then treat the oily part first.
Oil based stains: butter, margarine, mayonnaise, cooking oil, deodorant, car grease, gasoline, ointment, and hair oil.
These stains sit deep in the fabric and can’t easily be removed. You can pre-treating the stain with a spray stain treatment or stain stick. These products have solvents that will break down the stain. Soak the clothes in the hottest water the fabric can tolerate. Be certain to re-treat if there are traces of the stain before drying!
Protein stains: dairy, baby food, bodily excrement, blood, glue and mud.
Scrub the grime off with either a fork or spoon then soak items in cold water. Hot water will fix the protein stain into the cloth. Scrub the items with your hands and use a heavy-duty laundry detergent. You may need to do this more than once, especially if it’s a dried stain. If the stain remains, bleach may also be used if it will not damage the clothing item.
Tannin stains: wine, tea, tomato juice, soft drinks, fruit juice, alcohol products, berries and coffee.
These stains should be washed in hot water with detergent. Do not try to pre-treat these items with regular soap, as it will help to set the stain. Bleach must be used on old tannin-based stains.
Dye stains: blueberries, cherries, powdered drink mixes, permanent markers, ink, grass and mustard.
These stains spread fast and are the most difficult to remove. If you treat the item right away you can wash it with hot water. Use a pre-treatment product and then rinse the item thoroughly. You may have to do this several times. White items can be bleached, and some stains can be lightened with rubbing alcohol if the fabric will allow it.
It’s not rocket science but it is a science. Not all stain remedies are created equal. It’s important to identify the stain before choosing a cleaning product and a wash cycle. Always obey the care label on the item.
When you visit Classic Cleaners you can trust your pesky stains to our trained stain removal specialists. They are equipped to handle the task of making your clothes look as good as new – just be sure to tell them what type of stain is on your item!!